UPDATE 1-CGG shares drop ahead of govt meeting over Technip approach
Thu Dec 11, 2014 6:01am
Dec 11 (Reuters) - Shares in Paris-listed oil industry seismic surveys specialist CGG fell 10 percent on Thursday on a media report that the French government had doubts about a tie-up with larger French oil services firm Technip, traders said.
Last month CGG rebuffed a 1.47 billion euro ($1.82 billion) takeover offer from Technip, which had offered 8.3 euros per share for the smaller company.
La Tribune reported on its web site that the government was "looking closely at what is going on" and that an audit was being carried out.
A spokesman for CGG said the group had not been informed of the nomination of any expert by the government. No one was immediately available for comment at Technip and the finance ministry.
Shares in Technip and CGG have been very volatile since Technip unveiled its bid. The swings have been exacerbated by rumours of consolidation in the oil services sector prompted by the sharp drop in crude oil prices since June.
Last week, CGG shares rose more than 8 percent on speculation of a fresh bid from Technip, although nothing materialised.
"There are many people who have an interest in making the shares move in one way or another, brokers are having a field day," a source close to the deal said. By 1045 GMT, CGG stock was down 7.05 percent while Technip's rose by 1.92 percent.
The price move also came ahead of a meeting between government ministers and trade union representatives later on Thursday. (Reporting by Alexandre Boksenbaum-Granier, Michel Rose, Jean-Baptiste Vey, Editing by Andrew Callus)